KOZHIKODE: The implementation of the ‘Food on Wheels’ project, even after two months of its launch, remains on paper. The ambitious project, mooted by the Gender Park scheme, is being delayed owing to technical impediments. The project is yet to get the approval of the Corporation council.
According to the sources with the Corporation, in the wake of the mounting allegations against various projects initiated by the Kudumbashree Mission, the Opposition is likely to oppose the project tooth and nail.
Alleging various irregularities with the ‘Food on Wheels’ project, Corporation councillor C N Moinkutty says the council will not approve the same until the apprehensions are clarified.
Moinkutty says that reliable sources have informed the councillors that the authorities are planning to entrust the running of the project to event management groups, leaving the poor entrepreneurs in the lurch. As per the plans, the entrepreneurs will only serve food to customers, while a private catering service group will prepare the delicacies, Moinkutty adds.
“After providing training to several women entrepreneurs in preparing and serving food, why should the authorities entrust the preparation jobs to a catering group?” he asks.
Such moves will deny due profits to the entrepreneurs, says Moinkutty. The authorities are trying to degrade the trained entrepreneurs as mere food servers, he says.
Corporation councillor P Kishan Chand says that the council will approve the project only if it proves beneficial for the entrepreneurs.
K Mohammed Ali, another councillor, says that the projects aimed at extending benefits for poor women are often immersed in corruption.
“The authorities are obliged to give a clarification in the wake of the various allegations levelled against various Kudumbashree initiatives,” Mohammed Ali says.
Meanwhile, Kudumbashree project director Ramsy Ismael and South Community Development Society chairperson Sheeja Vinod say the project will be launched by next month.
They add that the pilot project has got an impressive response from various quarters and several entrepreneur groups have consulted the Corporation, expressing their willingness to participate in the project. Expressing confidence in the Corporation approving the project, Sheeja Vinod says the project is intended to provide financial uplift for women entrepreneurs.